DEATH BY DISTRIBUTION.

View NCGA Bill Details2019-2020 Session
House Bill 474 (Public) Filed Tuesday, March 26, 2019
AN ACT TO CREATE THE OFFENSES OF DEATH BY DISTRIBUTION OF CERTAIN CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES AND AGGRAVATED DEATH BY DISTRIBUTION OF CERTAIN CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES.
Intro. by Arp, D. Hall, C. Smith, Faircloth.

Status: Ch. SL 2019-83 (Jul 8 2019)

SOG comments (1):

Identical bill

Identical to S 375, filed 3/27/19.

Bill History:

H 474/S.L. 2019-83

Bill Summaries:

  • Summary date: Jul 8 2019 - More information

    AN ACT TO CREATE THE OFFENSES OF DEATH BY DISTRIBUTION OF CERTAIN CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES AND AGGRAVATED DEATH BY DISTRIBUTION OF CERTAIN CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES. SL 2019-83. Enacted July 8, 2019. Effective December 1, 2019. 


  • Summary date: Jun 19 2019 - More information

    Senate committee substitute to the 3rd edition makes the following changes.

    Amends proposed GS 14-18.4 as follows. Amends the requirements to be met for a person to be guilty of death by distribution of certain controlled substances to require that the person unlawfully sells (was, unlawfully sells or delivers as part of the sale) at least one certain controlled substance (previously specified that the recipient be the victim). Makes the same changes to the offense of aggravated death by distribution of certain controlled substances. No longer includes death by distribution of certain controlled substances as a lesser included offense of murder in violation of GS 14-17(b)(2). Makes additional clarifying changes.


  • Summary date: May 6 2019 - More information

    House amendment #1 makes the following changes to the 2nd edition.

    Amends proposed GS 14-18.4 as follows. Amends the requirements to be met for a person to be guilty of death by distribution of certain controlled substances to require that the person unlawfully sells or delivers as part of the sale (was, sells or delivers) at least one certain controlled substance to the victim that is ingested by the user and is the actual and proximate cause of the user's death. Makes the same changes to the elements of aggravated death by distribution of certain controlled substances. Specifies that the statute does not apply to (1) issuing a valid prescription for a controlled substance for a legitimate medical purpose by an individual practitioner acting in the usual course of professional practice (previously did not specify individual practitioner) or (2) dispensing, delivering, or administering a controlled substance pursuant to a prescription, by a permitted pharmacist, a pharmacist, or an individual practitioner (previously limited to a pharmacist dispensing and delivering a valid prescription of a controlled substance in the usual course of professional practice).


  • Summary date: Apr 26 2019 - More information

    House committee substitute to the 1st edition makes the following changes. 

    Amends proposed GS 14-18.4 as follows. Adds definition for the term unlawful financial transaction. Amends the requirements to be met for a person to be guilty of death by distribution of certain controlled substances to require that the person unlawfully sells or delivers (was, unlawfully distributed) at least one certain controlled substance to the victim or is part of the chain of unlawful financial transaction of the sale and delivery to the victim (was, the person unlawfully distributed at least one certain controlled substance to the victim only). Makes conforming and technical changes. Makes the same changes to the elements of aggravated death by distribution of certain controlled substances and removes convictions under GS 90-95(e)(5) (any person 18 years of age or over who violates GS 90-95(a)(1) by selling or delivering a controlled substance to a youth in the identified age ranges or to a pregnant woman) from the list of the previous convictions necessary for aggravated death by distribution of certain controlled substances. Makes additional clarifying changes. Adds that the statute does not restrict or interfere with the rights and immunities under GS 90-96.2 (providing limited immunity for drug-related overdose treatment). Adds that the statute does not apply to (1) a practitioner issuing a valid prescription for a controlled substance for a legitimate medical purpose in the usual course of professional practice or (2) a pharmacist dispensing and delivering a valid prescription for a controlled substance in the usual course of professional practice. 


  • Summary date: Mar 26 2019 - More information

    Includes whereas clauses.

    Enacts new GS 14-18.4 creating the crime of death by distribution of certain controlled substances applicable in instances when (1) the person unlawfully distributed at least one certain controlled substance to the victim, (2) the ingestion of the certain controlled substance or substances caused the user's death, (3) the person's unlawful distribution of the certain controlled substance or substances was a proximate cause of the victim's death, and (4) the person did not act with malice. Punishable as a Class C felony.

    A person is guilty of aggravated death by distribution of certain controlled substances if the person meets the elements of distribution of certain controlled substances described above and also has a previous conviction under this statute, GS 90-95(a)(1) (manufacture, sell or deliver, or possess with intent to manufacture, sell or deliver, a controlled substance), GS 90-95(e)(5) (any person 18 years of age or over who violates GS 90-95(a)(1) by selling or delivering a controlled substance to a youth in the identified age ranges or to a pregnant woman), GS 90-95.1 (engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise), GS 90-95.4 (employing or intentionally using a minor to commit a drug law violation), GS 90-95.6 (promoting drug sales by a minor), or trafficking in violation of GS 90-95; or a prior conviction in any federal or state court is substantially similar to an offense listed, within seven years of the date of the offense. Punishable as a Class B2 felony.

    Defines certain controlled substances as any opium, opiate, or opioid; any synthetic or natural salt, compound, derivative, or preparation of opium, opiate, or opioid; cocaine or any other substance described in GS 90-90(1)(d); methamphetamine; a depressant described in GS 90-92(a)(1); or a mixture of one or more of these substances.

    Provides that death by distribution of certain controlled substances constitutes a lesser included offense of aggravated death by distribution of certain controlled substances in violation of this statute and of murder.

    Includes the General Assembly's intent.

    Applies to offenses committed on or after December 1, 2019. 


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